Sprinters dominant against Tigers at Texas Relays
For the first time since 1960, the men’s track & field team was named the Most Outstanding Team at the Clyde Littlefield Texas Relays Saturday.
The Cougars took on what seemed like the entirety of the track & field world at the University of Texas, but their world class sprinters overcame the challenge and claimed four different event wins, setting numerous nation-leading times.
Again, it was between the Cougars and the LSU Tigers when it came to the sprinting relays. The Tigers and Cougars came into the meet with the No. 1 and No. 3 fastest 4x100m relay times in the country, respectively. Their performances proved as much.
Like a horse race, the two teams were literally neck and neck throughout the race. Junior John Lewis III, senior Elijah Hall and freshman Nick Alexander all did their part, but Alexander had trouble getting the baton to senior Cameron Burrell on the anchor leg.
Despite the bad pass, Burrell was able to edge the Tigers at the finish line, 38.915s to 38.919s.
For the Cougars, their time solidified their No. 3 rank in the nation. But as the defending national champions, their ability to close out the race might prove influential down the line.
The teams faced each other again in the 4x200m relay, but this race did not look to be as close as the first. The Tigers were ahead for three-fourths of the race. Juniors Amere Lattin and Kahmari Montgomery and Burrell just could not get ahead.
But on the final leg, Hall went into another gear as he stormed past the Tigers to win the race in one minute, 21.48s.
Yet even with the two relay victories, Burrell and Hall were far from done.
While no Cougars qualified for the men’s 100m final, Burrell ran in the men’s 100m invitational. Running against professional athletes from Nike, Burrell outran them all with a time of 10.01s. His time would have been the fastest in the country. Unfortunately, it came with a wind of 4.1 m/s.
In track & field, any event with a wind of above 4.0 m/s goes unrecorded.
Hall, far from tired from the relay races, ran in the men’s 200m invitational. There, he one-upped his teammate Burrell by crossing the finish line in 20.11s. Hall’s time is also No. 1 in the NCAA.
Hall was named the Most Outstanding Performer, becoming the first Cougar to be named such since Leroy Burrell in 1989.
Lattin rounded out the meet with NCAA Top 10 times in both hurdles races. In the 400m hurdles he placed second in 50.29s (No. 2 NCAA), and in the 110m hurdles he placed fifth in 13.72s (No. 7 NCAA).
Overall, the Texas Relays historically are a strong indicator for how a team will perform at the national championships. Given the Cougars were the team of the meet, the season looks bright.